eBay to Limit Firearm and Militaria-Related Material

M att Halprin, eBay Vice President, Trust & Safety, announced that eBay will be updating their Firearms, Weapons and Knives Policy to place more restrictions around gun-related items. Once these changes take effect, eBay will prohibit listings of any firearm part that is required for the firing of a gun. This includes items like bullet tips, brass casings and shells, barrels, slides, cylinders, magazines, firing pins and trigger assemblies.

Mr. Halprin’s letter is below:       Matt Halprin.jpg

    Hello everyone,
    In mid-August, we will be updating our Firearms, Weapons and Knives Policy to place more restrictions around gun-related items. Once these changes take effect, we will prohibit listings of any firearm part that is required for the firing of a gun. This includes items like bullet tips, brass casings and shells, barrels, slides, cylinders, magazines, firing pins, trigger assemblies, etc. Please read the Firearms, Weapons and Knives Policy for more details on our current policy.
       As you may know, eBay does not allow the listing of any items which are regulated by individual states or the federal government; however, there are still a large number of firearm-related parts that are legal and are widely available in retail stores. These items have also historically been allowed on eBay.
    After learning that some items purchased on eBay may have been used in the tragedy at Virginia Tech in April 2007, we felt that revisiting our policies was not only necessary, but the right thing to do. After much consideration, the Trust & Safety policy team – along with our executive leaders at eBay Inc. – have made the decision to further restrict more of these items than federal and state regulations require.
    This new update continues to encourage safety among our community members and brings our policies in the U.S. and Canada in closer alignment with our existing policies in other markets around the globe.
    Matt Halprin
    Vice President, Trust & Safety

eBay’s Firearms, Weapons and Knives Policy
    The following policy is published on EBay’s site:
    Since many firearm-related items, gun parts, gun accessories, paintball equipment and accessories, stun guns, crossbows, airsoft equipment and accessories, hand weapons and throwing knives are not permitted on eBay, sellers must carefully review the ‘Some Examples’ section below before listing these items and adhere to all the policies outlined.
    Furthermore, because of the varied international laws related to the sale of these items, those that are permitted may only be sold on eBay U.S under the following two conditions.
*The item is sold by sellers who are located in United States and
*The item location is also in the United States.

    Note:  US sellers must offer only domestic shipping on these products, since offering global shipping will make the product available in countries where these items are prohibited.
    Weapons listed on eBay U.S. must comply with the California Penal Code covering the sale of weapons. Otherwise, these items are not permitted on eBay.
 Violations of this policy may result in a range of actions, including:
*Listing cancellation 
*Limits on account privileges
*Account suspension
*Forfeit of eBay fees on cancelled listings
*Loss of PowerSeller status
Some examples:

Militaria, Ordnance and Grenades


*Equipment and supplies issued to and formerly used by United States Armed Forces that have not been disposed of in accordance with Department of Defense demilitarization policies. Sales of such items may constitute violations of federal law.
*Ordnance (military weaponry, ammunition, and related parts), even if the item is “unserviceable” or has been “demilitarized” or “demilled,” as eBay cannot confirm that the item has effectively and permanently been altered for lawful and safe transport and sale.
*Grenades, including metal military practice grenades, rifle grenades, dummy grenades, grenade launcher attachments, and mines.

*Replica ordnance, specifically items that were never actual military ordnance
*Relics, curios, memorabilia, or display items permanently altered to prevent ready modification for use as a grenade.

Firearm Parts and Accessories:

    eBay prohibits members from listing firearms, including antique, collectible, and sport & hunting firearms as well as ammunition. This includes, but is not limited to:
*Assault weapon-related parts or accessories. This prohibition applies to all parts and accessories related to any firearm defined as an “assault weapon” by federal or California law. For more details on assault weapons, please visit http://ag.ca.gov/firearms/awlist.htm and http://ag.ca.gov/firearms/awguide/awguide.php.
*Firearm receivers or frames, whether complete receivers and frames, components and parts of receivers and frames, or “cut” or “80%” receivers.
*Parts or accessories prohibited for sale by federal or California law, including items related to short-barreled shotguns or short-barreled rifles, fully automatic weapons, large-capacity magazines, multi-burst trigger activators and camouflaging firearm containers.
*Any of the following firearms-related items: silencers, converters (items that can be used to give a firearm automatic capability), kits that can be used to create a firearm, potato guns and cannons, flares, flare launchers, flare guns, flare gun receivers, short barrels and any illegal firearm-related items.
    Please note that any photos in a listing (including stock photos) must also abide by our Firearms, Weapons and Knives policy. If a prohibited item is included in a photograph for a non-prohibited item, the listing may be ended.

*All other legal gun parts and accessories, including, but not limited to, trigger guards, firing pins, barrels, stocks, butt plates, trigger assemblies, pistol grips, holsters and scopes. Listings for such items must clearly state the type of firearm for which the part or accessory is designed. If this information is not provided, the listing may be ended.

BB Guns, Replicas, Blank Guns and Imitation Guns

*BB guns, air guns, black powder guns or muzzle-loader guns
*Blank guns
*Starter pistols
*Listings that use the term “BB gun” in the item title or description of any listing for an airsoft or replica gun.

*Paintball guns, “airsoft” guns*, pellet guns, replica, “look-alike,” and imitation firearms under certain circumstances. These items:
-Must have clear markings permanently affixed to them (commonly blaze orange markings on the barrel or a blaze orange plug inserted into the barrel)
-Must not be readily convertible to shoot a lethal projectile
-Must be located in the U.S. and the seller must be located in the U.S.
    These rules apply to all items designed to look like firearms, including replicas/imitation guns of any age, as well as toy and cap guns.
    Note: Most states require that purchasers of airsoft guns be 18 years of age or older.

Stun Guns

*The possession and sale of stun guns is prohibited in Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia and may also be illegal in other locations within the United States. In addition to being prohibited under certain state laws, some municipalities also limit stun gun sales.
*Stun guns that are designed to look like everyday items, such as cell phones or flashlights, or which are designed to be hidden or concealed, are not permitted on eBay.

*Sales of stun guns on eBay are only permitted to the extent permissible by law and may only be bought, sold, and shipped within the US. Sellers are responsible for reviewing the laws in their location and the location of the buyer and ensuring that sales are legal in both locations before listing and completing such transactions on eBay.

Hand Weapons

*Brass, plastic or metal knuckles
*Leaded cane/staff/crutch/stick
*Zip guns
*Throwing stars
*Knuckle knives
*Billy clubs/batons
*Sandclubs or sandbags
*Slungshots (also known as saps or blackjacks)

*Faux or practice items, such as foam nunchaku or plastic throwing stars


*Switchblade Knives: The interstate sale of switchblade knives is prohibited by federal law; therefore switchblade knives may not be listed on eBay. Federal law defines switchblade knives as “any knife having a blade which opens automatically (1) by and pressure applied to a button or other device in the handle of the knife, or (2) by operation of inertia, gravity, or both.” Butterfly knives are also prohibited.
*Disguised Knives: Knives disguised to look like a harmless item are not permitted on eBay. These items include but are not limited to belt buckle knives, lipstick case knives, air gauge knives, and writing pen knives.
*Push Knives: Push knives are not permitted on eBay. These items are often referred to as push daggers, punch daggers, punch knives, push dirks or T-handled knives.

*All other knives are generally permitted.

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